Extranjeros De Si Mismos (2000)

Run Time - 81 min.  |   Countries - Spain  |  
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While the Spanish Civil War had its roots in a series of internal political and economic crises, it was widely perceived as having serious implications in international affairs, and volunteers from a number of foreign nations arrived in Spain during the conflict -- some to fight alongside Franco's armies, others to join the Republican loyalists. Extranjeros De Si Mismos is a documentary centered around interviews with a number of veterans of the Spanish Civil War, including American and European freedom-fighters who aided the Republican cause as part of the International Brigade, Italians who arrived to defend Franco at the urging of Mussolini, and Spaniards who fought in the Franco-backed Blue Division -- which later went on to Russia to aid the German forces who helped defeat the Republicans. (The Blue Division veterans interviewed include Luis Ciges, later a noted actor, and Luis Berlanga, a respected director -- both of whom make clear that politics had little if anything to do with their decision to volunteer.) Narrated by actress Emma Suarez, Extranjeros De Si Mismos was shown in competition at Spain's Valladolid Film Festival in the fall of 2000.